Baxter to buy specialty drug maker Prism

By Bruce Japsen
Posted Monday at 8:11 a.m.

Baxter International Inc. said it will pay at least $170 million to buy a specialty drug maker that has high hopes for a heart drug used in hospitals to treat irregular heart beats.

The Deerfield-based drug and medical device maker is purchasing King of Prussia, Pa.-based Prism Pharmaceuticals Inc., which sells the drug Nexterone. Key for Baxter, which has a large medication delivery business is that Nexterone is sold in “ready-to-use premixed intravenous bag formulations as well as vials and a pre-filled syringe,” the company said in a statement.

Terms of the deal call for privately-held Prism to get an “an upfront cash payment of $170 million at closing and up to $168 million in future sales-based milestone payments,” Baxter said. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

“(Nexterone) offers clinicians a unique, ready-to-use antiarrhythmic agent for critical and time sensitive situations, while also providing convenience to caregivers and value to pharmacists,” said Robert Davis, the president of Baxter’s medical products business. “Based on our strong hospital relationships and familiarity with the product, Baxter is well-positioned to launch the ready-to-use presentations.”

The company said the drug is used to treat “ventricular, or fast forms of irregular heartbeat.”

Baxter already has had a relationship with Prism. Baxter has been the contract manufacturer Prism hired to manufacture premixed IV bags for its products.

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